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Thread: 645Z here I come.....I think

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    645Z here I come.....I think

    I seem to be moving inexorably towards a 645Z. In the last three years I've shot and enjoyed, a Canon 5D Mk2, Olympus EM-1 and Leica M9 concurrently but I'm terribly disappointed by the EM-1 files so that is a short lived love affair and miss the deliberation of the Canon when shooting landscapes.

    The 645Z files look great and the weight and "slow" shooting style of MF format suits my subject matter and style.

    I'm keen to get some insights on the 645Z as well as MF in general for somebody who hasn't shot MF before but is used to and comfortable with the deliberation involved in landscape shooting and MF shooting.

    BTW, love those images in the images thread!!

    My questions are these (and there are a few!!).

    1. I shoot predominantly landscapes but bulk and weight are not an issue. I've read comments about the 25/4 not seeming so wide as the EFOV might on 35mm, can those who own it justify its price in terms of FOV over let's say the 35 or even the latest 28-45 zoom (ok, with that zoom and the 645ZX I may have to work out a bit), image quality, etc?

    2. Can somebody point me to a few links telling me the lenses that are available for the 645Z with an adapter and perhaps also a review of how well they stack up against the Pentax 645 lenses?

    3. Everybody seems to rave about the increased DR but I have yet to read anything about the use of grads in landscapes, I use them now and consider them an essential part of the kit but it seems odd that there are so many accomplished MF shooters that don't mention them or am I just reading the wrong threads?

    4. How much variation do you feel there is between samples of the older A lenses, some people seem to say lots, others say not much.

    5. Realistically, I seem to be looking at the 28-45 zoom, 120/4 macro, maybe the 150 and maybe 300mm. Thoughts?

    6. What non Pentax lenses (adapted) do you own and enjoy?

    7. Do you see Photokina doing anything to affect the current supply (or non-supply) of used 645Z's? No big deal if not, I think I'm committed to removing that kidney and selling that child.

    Many thanks for your insights

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    Re: 645Z here I come.....I think

    Welcome.

    I don't use grads, but I have no problems using PS to brings down the highlights in skies/backgrounds. For example, the foreground in in shadow, the valley at the horizon is not (I used two curve layers to control the tonality, which became increasingly brighter to the horizon, naturally, thing could be brought down more).



    But I was never a grad user before. But I am always amazed at what I can pull from highlights.



    Both images with the A35mm. And with a 645D, not Z.

    I have not really found sample variation to be great. I have not had a bad lens--so maybe I am lucky. I use an A35mm and an A120mm. I know other members have said there is, but that is not my experience.

    I think if you have the 120mm Macro, the 150mm is not going to give you much more. I have the 300mm f/5.6 (I took that for the weight). I find the contrast a little low, nothing that cannot be fixed. It is sharp. It is my least used lens. But I am not much of a telephoto guy. I also have the 1.4X teleconverter which I use on that and the 120mm. It works well for both lenses--I really do not see a loss in IQ.

    I don't use adapted lenses for two reason. I don't find the Pentax lenses lacking. I did adapt a Pentax 67 105mm f/2.4, but the camera then defaults to center-weighted metering and I found the WB was not as good. That was replaced with the 120mm macro, which is much nicer. I also like the aperture control on the body.

    The 645Z was just released. I don't see the used market being big right now.
    Last edited by Shashin; 9th September 2014 at 12:16.

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    Re: 645Z here I come.....I think

    Quote Originally Posted by GarethC View Post
    3. Everybody seems to rave about the increased DR but I have yet to read anything about the use of grads in landscapes, I use them now and consider them an essential part of the kit but it seems odd that there are so many accomplished MF shooters that don't mention them or am I just reading the wrong threads?
    I use grads, and I know about a few others that do too. Some use it although they don't think it's strictly required technically, just because they like to "tonemap" in camera.

    I use grads on a tech cam and with a special technique, I shoot LCC with grad on and cancel out the grad in post, and then apply tonemapping, which indeed often is a grad at least partially, but in post you can tune it to perfection. My grad technique is thus only to optimize exposure in the field.

    Another technique is simply to shoot a HDR stack in tough light conditions and merge in post, you get far with just two shots.

    My digital back is old though, with ~12.5 stops of DR, while the 645z has ~14. I would probably still use grads on the 645z in some cases, just to increase quality in the under-exposed area.

    Some simply have a shooting style so they don't shoot in so strong back light that grads would be needed, or just let shadows be very dark, or accept a higher noise level when pushing the shadows. The 645z has extremely clean shadows as the sensor has almost no read noise, but if you push shadows hard it still means you don't have many captured photons there which may have negative impact on color richness.

    I've attached a recent example (shot last weekend) were I used a grad at capture time (cancelled out in post by LCC and the image re-tonemapped with Lumariver HDR) to give an idea of light conditions where I use them.

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